Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - Your Letters -

I am an avid clas­sic Mini fan, and have owned nu­mer­ous mod­els since the 1970s. I’ve re­paired, main­tained and re­fur­bished all types along the way, and found that back in the day, when parts needed re­plac­ing, it was a sim­ple case of vis­it­ing the near­est Ley­land deal­er­ship to source gen­uine parts. You could pur­chase the part, fit it your­self, and it would give you years of trou­ble-free ser­vice.

How things have changed. And not for the bet­ter. Two years ago, my friend and I re­stored a 1973 Club­man, and when the car was up and run­ning, it sailed through its MoT. The eu­pho­ria didn’t last long – three weeks later, the near­side front wheel­bear­ing broke in half. When I told my sup­plier, he was of the opin­ion that the bear­ing had been over­tight­ened when fit­ted. As a qual­i­fied Mini spe­cial­ist had fit­ted it, this was highly un­likely.

Around seven months later, the re­place­ment bear­ing failed. Af­ter speak­ing to the same sup­plier, I was fobbed off with the same an­swer, with­out any of­fer of com­pen­sa­tion or re­place­ment. Six months later, the off­side front bear­ing then failed af­ter the cage dis­in­te­grated. This was then re­placed with a new bear­ing, from a dif­fer­ent sup­plier, and that failed shortly af­ter­wards. It’s now been on the road for two years, and is on its third set of bear­ings!

The dan­gers of poor sub­sti­tute parts is a sit­u­a­tion that needs high­light­ing, and if it con­tin­ues unchecked, one day soon, many older clas­sics will dis­ap­pear from our roads be­cause of them. D Ec­cles, Clay­ton-le-Woods, Lan­cashire

The best let­ter we re­ceive wins a bot­tle of Au­to­glym Su­per Resin pol­ish. If your let­ter is here, please claim by email­ing edi­to­rial@ clas­s­ic­car­weekly.co.uk

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